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Fourth day of power cuts in Santorini

16 August 2013 / 17:08:04  GRReporter
4425 reads

Anastasia Balezdrova

Santorini has remained without electricity for the fourth consecutive day in the period of the most intensive tourist “traffic”. There have been power supply restrictions on the island from the moment when a fire broke out in the generators of its power plant.

Despite the assurances by the Public Power Corporation DEI that it would fix the problem as quickly as possible, there has been another failure in the system. According to Nikolaos Zorzos, mayor of Santorini, this time the fault is the result of an explosion in a capacitor which has caused an imbalance between the production and consumption of electric power.

"The reason no longer matters regardless of what had happened... It is absolutely unacceptable for the electricity supply to not have been restored from Tuesday to today," he said.

The mayor has announced his intention to file a complaint against every person who is responsible for the situation. "We have already lost any tolerance," stresses Nikolaos Zorzos, who yesterday urged the government to send to the island a responsible minister and the prosecutor’s office to intervene in the case.

His request has been fulfilled and Ministers of Interior and Tourism Yiannis Mihelakis and Olga Kefalogiannis are on the island today to participate in the meetings of the local institutions which are seeking a solution to the ongoing problem.

"DEI’s technicians informed me that the failure in the power plant is unprecedented in the country. In fact, it has affected the basic functions of the plant which ceased to operate for several hours. The power supply will be restored tomorrow (Saturday – author’s note) at the latest through the coordinated actions of DEI’s employees and the important support from all institutions on the island," the Minister of Interior said after the meeting.

"All of us, including the municipality, tourism employees and citizens have been trying to help resolve the problem. The damage is much more serious than we first thought. The power cuts on the island are continuing for the fourth consecutive day. In practice, all regions are supplied with power for a short while.

The problem is that DEI had told us that it would repair the damage as early as Thursday morning. Unfortunately, this did not happen. Therefore, our association has issued a communication announcing our intention to seek responsibility for what had happened," Marios Galanos, president of the association of tourism businesses on the island, told GRReporter.

Although no assessment has been made to date, the damage to tourism is enormous. "Apart from the pressure due to working under these conditions, the costs of buying generators are very high. This is the peak period of the tourist season and it is important for all employees in the tourism sector to perform well in order for them to survive."

Since the beginning of the year, the municipality and tourism companies have made every effort to attract large numbers of tourists to the island which is famous anyway. They have launched the initiative "2013 - the year of gastronomy on Santorini" in order to promote the local products and attract visitors who are looking for sophisticated tastes. Apparently, they have successfully realized it as there are between 100 and 120 thousand tourists on the island of Santorini at present.

Marios Galanos states that local businessmen are doing their best to improve the tourists’ stay.  "The situation was very serious in the previous days. We are trying hard to keep things under control but some restaurants were forced to close for several hours a day. We do not yet know the scale of the damage but, certainly, it is significant."


The businessman from Santorini stresses that all people on the island are making every effort to serve the tourists. "Be sure that we will not leave things this way and will hold accountable those who are responsible for the situation. What is happening in Santorini will not subside just like that. We all want to be aware of the real reasons for this situation and we will do everything that is necessary to achieve this."

Tags: SantoriniGreek islandsFireSummer seasonTouristsVisitsPower plantTourism companies
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